I have been waiting for AGES to share this wedding with you, and it’s been hard not to!  Jessica & Aleem had the honour of having the first Renaissance Edmonton Airport Hotel Wedding! When news of their gorgeous wedding and brand new hotel reached Blush Magazine, they asked us if they’d be able to publish it even before the wedding had happened!  You can see the feature in Blush’s latest edition, out now.

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An incredible couple plus a dream team of vendors…we couldn’t really go wrong. Jessica & Aleem’s wedding was fun and modern from start to finish.  Jessica & Aleem are sweet, smiley, and so close to their friends and family, the entire wedding felt like one big amazing party.

For any couples considering a wedding at the Renaissance, I can say from personal experience that it is a gorgeous venue, the staff is amazing, and the meal was easily one of the best I’ve had in the last 9 years as a wedding photographer.  Don’t let the drive out of the city fool you – this is a fantastic option for a wedding.

Thanks so much to Bruce for spending this Starbucks-fueled weekend with me.  Best work husband a girl could ask for!

Planner: Atmosphere Weddings
Venue: Renaissance Edmonton Airport Hotel
Florist: faBLOOMosity
Decor: Site 6 Events
DJ: DJ Kwake from Urban Metropolis
Hair & Makeup: Miss Vautour Makeup Artistry
Reception backdrop design: PinkPolka Invitations and Stationery 

The week began with Ismaili wedding customs and ceremony, and then a civil ceremony and reception at the Renaissance.

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For anyone who hasn’t seen this ceremony before, the groom’s family and friends basically take the opportunity to douse him in the grossest possible food items (think sardines, BBQ sauce, eggs etc).  I had about two million mosquito bites – they were quite attracted to the honey being poured on Aleem, and I was right in the swarm!

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  1. Erika Mann posted the following on January 23, 2015 at 11:36 am.

    Awesome job you guys. One of my favourites of yours.


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If Grace & Jon’s wedding is any indication about how 2015 is going to go, I’m as happy as a clam!

Despite frigid temperatures, these two lovebirds had a beautiful wedding in Banff at the Buffalo Mountain Lodge.  True to form, I managed to fall through the ice on the lake, and I VERY much enjoyed the hot tub at the hotel to thaw my toes out….but Grace & Jon barely seemed to notice the cold – they only had eyes for each other, even as the storm rolled in.

Grace & Jon’s story is straight out of a Hollywood movie, with a chance meeting at a vet clinic leading to a fairytale wedding!  In the middle of the ceremony, Jon stumbled over a few of his words, and quite literally blamed it on being lost in Grace’s eyes. So romantic!!!  They are completely adorable, lighthearted, family-oriented, and an incredible amount of fun.

A BIG thank you to Grace & Jon’s entire bridal party for helping to make the day fantastic as well (and the party back in Edmonton WOOHOO!!) – it was awesome meeting you all and you kept me laughing the whole day.

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Happy 2015 everyone! What better way to start the year than with a beautiful new little baby girl. Congratulations to Carrie & Nick on welcoming their sweet daughter. It always really cool when my wedding couples come back to see me when they start their families!

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We were lucky enough on our recent trip to Maui to have one of my best friends and her husband join us in paradise!  We loved being part of Julia & Richard’s wedding just over a year ago, and had a fantastic time exploring Maui with them.  Before we headed to a luau together we squeezed in a quick photo shoot on the beach.  I have a major love affair with Hawaii, and I can’t wait to go back!

For anyone who may not know, we have a condo in Kihei on the island of Maui that we run as a vacation rental. The beach where these photos were taken is just across the street! If you’re looking for a stress-free getaway, please have a look at our listing here: http://www.vrbo.com/506942

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Anyone who has worked with me knows that when I get really excited when I’m shooting I tend to squeal.  Really high-pitched. And sometimes I even wave my arms around.  I can’t help it – when I’m inspired and excited it literally manifests as a physical reaction.  This shoot with Stacia was exactly that from start to finish.

I’ve adored this girl since we first met about their wedding photography.  She is as gorgeous on the inside as she is on the outside, and I have always enjoyed spending time with her.  She’s a fantastic teacher and I’m sure will be an incredible mother.  Leading up to her shoot the weather turned extremely cold (-30 celcius!) but this fearless girl was still game to head outside for her dream shoot.  I absolutely love the dress that she chose for her session, she looks like a beautiful wintry princess.  Thanks for braving the cold with me Stacia!  I can’t wait to meet your little one!

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  1. Rajendra Pejavar posted the following on December 8, 2014 at 12:07 pm.

    Your introductory remarks are equally marvelous as your photographs…

  2. Michael Shandro posted the following on December 8, 2014 at 12:11 pm.

    Thank you so much!


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Amy and Scott are getting married next spring at the Yellowhead Brewery (I am very excited for their wedding, I’ve been waiting to get into there for a long time)! We got together this winter for a snowy outdoor engagement shoot. They brought along their super-cute son Connor for a few of the pictures.

– Michael


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  1. Shalene posted the following on December 4, 2014 at 9:31 am.

    What an adorable little guy they have!! And I love the shot with the light circles around them! ^_^


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I have known the Lobays for my whole life. Their family and ours are great friends going generations back. We would spend time together at Christmas and went to school together. I was honoured to be able to take their family pictures in their beautiful yard. It is wonderful to see how much the family has grown.

– Michael

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I first met Alexis when she was a bridesmaid for Amanda & Foster several years ago, and she was a bridesmaid again for Jeanelle & Mike last year.  Her over the top bubbly personality drew me to her immediately, and she has such a fantastic group of girlfriends/family that I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know through the weddings and also the festivities leading up to Alexis & Tyler’s big day.  Tyler is funny, and very hard working, and I can only imagine how much he and Alexis laugh together. They met at a party through mutual friends, and their relationship grew strong and slow over time.

This was my last wedding of the year (WOO!) and I want to give a huge shout out to Alexis & Tyler and their whole bridal party for being a total blast, and Sam for his hard work shooting with me not only on this wedding but for the last year.

Some fantastic vendors for this wedding:

Wedding Day Management: Jennifer Bergman Weddings
Florist: Laurel’s On Whyte
Ceremony: Kirk United Church
Reception: Royal Glenora Club
Reception Stationery: PinkPolka
Cake: Donuts from Italian Bakery
Hair: Studio 107
Makeup: Amy Nicole
Decor: Special Event Rentals
Wedding Dress: Delica Bridal
Bridesmaids Dresses: Novelle Bridal
Groom’s Suit: Moore’s

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  1. Jennifer Bergman Weddings posted the following on November 24, 2014 at 11:51 am.

    Beautiful! Congrats Alexis + Tyler! We were honoured to be part of your day!


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I’ve been struggling to find the words to adequately describe my experience with Kathy & Luc’s elopement (and if you know me you’ll realize I’m rarely at a loss for words!)  The best way that I can explain how it felt is to say that this wedding more than any other made me feel like an artist.  It brought into perspective exactly why I do what I do, and that there is creativity in me that is dying to get out.  I’ll never be able to thank Kathy enough for giving me this opportunity.

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Here’s the story (it’s a long one!).  Kathy was a makeup artist for a wedding we shot 3 years ago, and has followed us since then.  She and Luc have been together for several years and have 2 sons together. They decided to make it official, and she emailed me to ask about photographing their elopement. She said “Compared to the other weddings you photograph I know there wouldn’t be a lot of details, so I’m sure it would be quite the challenge. I am sure you book up super fast, so the date is really not an issue. It could be later this summer, it could be later next summer…It could be a Monday morning, or a Tuesday evening. It really does not matter to me what the day/date is. If this is something you would consider, I would love to hear your feedback on great locations, what the best time of day would be (we’re thinking somewhere outside downtown at dusk?)”

Talk about a dream! I get to pick the date/time/location of a wedding? That’s amazing for any wedding photographer – we often struggle with lighting and distracting elements in locations, but we don’t have control over it.  My inner control freak started to grin.  Then my mind went into overdrive.

For a few years I’ve had a crazy dream of getting the best wedding vendors in Edmonton together and throwing a wedding – letting each vendor work their magic and have total creative freedom, and working together to create a surprise wedding for a couple.  Kathy & Luc’s wedding was the perfect opportunity for me to make this dream a reality, and Kathy was so open to letting me plan things.  While it seemed like a fantastic idea, the week before the wedding I really started to panic. What if she and Luc didn’t like what I had put together?  The only thing that they were choosing was what they were going to wear and a general colour scheme.

After Kathy, her sister, and I rolled tree stumps down into the ravine the day of the wedding, Kathy gave me a gift. A beautiful Tiffany necklace that I wear almost daily. We hadn’t spent a lot of time together but I cherish this gift – she knew it was something I would love. And when she finally saw the ceremony location in person I knew she was going to love everything I had put together. I am by no means a wedding planner, but I’m really proud of how this all came together.  Most importantly, Kathy & Luc had a personal, emotional, and meaningful wedding.

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So now I’ll let the photos speak for themselves.  Here is my AMAZING team of vendors, and huge thanks to Kelsey for second shooting and helping me with setup, and Venessa for helping with set up as well.   See more in our feature on Swooned Magazine.

Florals: faBLOOMosity
Decor: Sepcial Event Rentals
Dress: Delica Bridal
Sign: Pink Polka
Cake: Style Cakes
Commissioner: Bill Pisarchuk

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  1. Deborah Parr posted the following on November 4, 2014 at 8:08 pm.

    Absolutely wonderful … just stunning. What a lovely couple …

    I’ve been following your blog since I had the privilege of marrying Jill and Marlow and we that’s where we first met. There are days when nothing seems to have gone right, so I (seriously) fire up the computer, sit and go through photos that you and Michael have taken and my day ends right.

    I truly believe that you both are following a calling in life and our world is a better place for it!

    Many thanks for sharing lives through your eyes, much appreciated!

    Deborah Parr

  2. Michael Shandro posted the following on November 6, 2014 at 2:55 pm.

    Deborah – thank you SO much for your kind words!! I can’t tell you what it means to us to hear that. We absolutely love what we do and it’s fantastic to hear how it affects people.


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What a day. Anne and George’s wedding was held one day before the first big snowflakes of the winter descended upon Edmonton. From the pictures you would never know that it is cold. We spend most of our time in the lush forests in the Muttart Conservatory.

George adores Anne and she was so happy all day. The speeches from family and friends painted a picture of Anne as a woman with a great heart who is willing to do anything to help others. George was spoken of as a man who strongly believes in family and his family has welcomed Anne into their home many times.

Congratulations Anne and George!

– Michael

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